Website Promotion

At this point, you have created a world class website, and you should be proud. It is time to get traffic to your site. Getting traffic to your site can be hard work. One of the first steps is to get awards to impress others.

Submit to Internet Directories or Search Engines

The most important part of website promotion is to submit your site to web directories, search engines and other websites. There are hundreds of search engines and internet directories on the web. You can submit to them individually or go to sites that allow submissions to multiple search engines or directories. Both the search engines and sites that submit to multiple search engines may allow anywhere from free submissions, to five dollars, to around two hundred dollars. Obviously, paying is more likely to get your submission considered sooner. Many search engines have various packages for submissions. Some allow free submissions for official non profit sites. See the Computer Technology Documentation Project Websites pages and click on the link that says "Promote Your Web Site" for promotional sites or click on the "Search Engines" link to find search engines to submit to.

Search Engine and Web Directories

There are two types of sites you should submit your site to:

  • Web directories catalog listings with weblinks to sites based on functional categories and subject. Usually these sites such as Yahoo and Dmoz are entered by hand and may take a long time to list sites or make changes. Many search engines crawl Dmoz listed sites and use Dmoz for their indexed catalog list. However, it may take six months or more to get on Yahoo unless a fee is paid, and some sections on Dmoz may lack an editor which can cause indefinate delay for websites in some categories. Submit your site once to appropriate categories on web directories and do not submit too often or your site may be banned. You may want to keep a record of when you submit your site, the category it was submitted in, and the name of the site you submitted to.
  • Web crawler based search engines such as Lycos and Exalead. These sites use webcrawlers which are programs that automatically go out to web pages and index the site and connecting links. The index results are placed in a database catalog and used to provide search results for users. Some web crawler programs only go one link deep, and may not be able to crawl web pages that use frames. These sites may also include a human entered catalog, but many allow free submission of URLs (Universal Resource Locators which indicate the human readable name and location of a website page) for the webcrawler programs to index. It is wise not to submit your site to search engines too often since this could be considered to be spamming and can cause your site to be banned.

Many experts say it is an essential part of website promotion, to get listed on Yahoo.com. This is because yahoo has the most traffic of any other search engine. Yahoo brags that they list the best sites on the web. I have found that this is no longer the case. Not only are many sites they list not very informational, they currently have many broken links due to the recent dot com business financial shakeups. I believe this is partly due to the fact that they have cut their staffing to the bone, and cannot keep the site current. It is important to get listed on Yahoo, but I'm not convinced that it is possible, although I'm still trying.

Action

Submit your site to Dmoz for free. Also submit to other web site catalogs like Yahoo and pay a fee if it is within your budget and practical. You can submit for free, but you may never get listed this way.

Go to sites like Exalead and Lycos and any others that allow free submissions to web crawlers. Submit the URL of your map file to be crawled, if you created one during the construction phase, otherwise submit your main page. It may take three weeks or more for results to show up.

Get Links to Your Site

An important part of website promotion includes getting various sites that have a high profile or high amount of traffic to link to your site. If your site content can complement or add to other sites, it is worthwhile to ask them to link to your site, either by using an email or filling out an on site form. Some sites that are listed on Yahoo may link to your site.

Getting links from any other sites may also help your website promotion because some search engines rank pages. The more links you get, in general your page ranking will go up.

Apply for Awards

There are many websites that provide various awards in many categories for good websites. Many people love to review websites. Some of these sites are search engines and also post a link to your website. You should apply for as many awards that are appropriate to your site. Do not apply multiple times for the same awards. To find sites that give awards find the Computer Technology Documentation Project Websites pages and click on the link that says "Sites that Give Awards". Sometimes, the award is based on the opinion of the agency or person giving the award, but usually criteria includes:

Post Awards on Your Site

You should brag about any awards you receive. Awards should be placed on the main page or on another page with a link from the main page. The award should be a link back to the site that gave the award. Once you have some awards, other organizations will consider your site more credible and worthwhile and you should get better responses to site submissions.

Get in Webrings

There are several webrings on the web. Webrings are groups of sites that have a theme in common. See the Computer Technology Documentation Project Websites pages and click on the link that says "Web Ring Sites". These are helpful, but not as helpful as getting links from multiple sites.

Use News

There are several sites that post news. It is helpful to submit articles to these sites to get the word out about your site. Simply write your own news bulletin about your web site significant events such as the startup of your group. See the Computer Technology Documentation Project Websites pages and click on the link that says "News Sources" under the "Information" header.

Other Promotion

If your site has useful information, you can post it on various forum websites when the subject matter is appropriate. See the Computer Technology Documentation Project Websites pages and click on the link that says "Forum Web Sites"

Advertising

If your organization requires traffic quickly and you have an advertising budget, it is worthwhile and required to pay for advertising. Be careful to choose sites to advertise on that have high traffic and draw people who would have an interest in your products.

Additional Idea

Create a offshoot of your site to give awards to other people's websites. One condition of getting the award is that those who receive your award must link back to your site. In some ways an award site is like a link trading scheme, but is much more ethical and elegant.
Note: Award sites purposes are usually one or more of:

  1. To make money.
  2. To increase links to the site to get better search engine listings.
  3. To actually give awards, only to excellent sites.
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